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Dennis Cunanan, the director general (on leave) of the Technology Resource Center, was the first government official allegedly involved in the so-called pork barrel scam to testify before the Senate blue ribbon committee; that fact gave his appearance at Thursday’s hearing additional import. His position at an agency which channeled Priority Development Assistance Fund allocations to suspect beneficiary organizations specifically identified by the offices of at least three senators could illuminate how the scam operated. At the same time, it raised the standards by which he and his testimony, and his application to turn state’s witness, must be judged.
By Rina Jimenez-David
Rare is the time when government officials and politicians cross interchamber borders to heap praise on each other. But during the celebration of International Women’s Day (which is officially marked tomorrow, March 8) at the House of Representatives, congresswomen led the adoption of HR 53 commending Social Welfare Secretary Dinky Soliman “for her strong commitment to public service and selfless dedication to alleviate the plight of disaster-stricken Filipinos.”
By Neal H. Cruz
It is turning out that the Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) is to blame for the traffic jams in Manila. Huge truck trailers that haul container vans to and from the Port Area use the narrow streets of Manila, thus contributing to traffic jams. Manila Mayor Joseph Estrada and Vice Mayor Isko Moreno conducted a four-month study of the problem. They concluded that if the trucks were confined to nighttime hours when traffic was light, daytime traffic would be free of the huge trucks and there would be less congestion. So they expanded the existing truck ban to start at 5 a.m., when most students and office workers go to their schools and offices. But the truckers, not used to changing their ways, protested and declared a strike. No cargo left the Port Area during the strike, thus denying manufacturing companies their supplies.
By Michael L. Tan
We tend to associate creativity with artists, often with the assumption that one is born with it. But now there are universities in Europe and the United States that are offering programs—from short seminars to degrees—to help people become creative. The creativity studies are often transdisciplinary in terms of both faculty and students, meaning engineers will get together with managers, natural scientists, artists, or social scientists.
By Ambeth R. Ocampo
If we are to go by the results of the recent local and international auctions, the prices of Philippine art have not only hit the roof but actually shot out of it! There is so much liquidity in Manila these days that many speculators have jumped on the bandwagon and have been buying names rather than pictures.
By Oscar Franklin Tan
Lawyer Ernesto “Ticky” Tabujara III posts on Facebook about sharing life’s little joys with his son, photos of the junk food his household consumes, his advocacy of responsible gun ownership, and being still sexy and macho at 49. Last Feb. 25, however, he posted a completely different set of photos.
By Fr. Cecilio L. Magsino
Some 10 years ago, I joined a group of high school students to do a “work camp” in Gasan, a small town in the western coast of Marinduque. The young boys repainted the physical structure of the public school and did some repairs. While looking at the work they were doing, I happened to go inside a classroom that was used by third-year high school students. There were piles of books the students would use for their studies, and I browsed through one they used for the subject “Health and Home Economics.” The author of the book devoted a chapter to pregnancy. I don’t recall the name of the author who I think was a woman. She gave wise advice to the young: Getting pregnant is best reserved for marriage, marriage must be prepared for, courtship done at the right time in one’s life, dating and choosing one’s spouse require mature judgment and so forth.
By Denis Murphy
Life in the fishing communities of Tacloban City devastated by Supertyphoon “Yolanda” can be austere and sacred one day, and funny and quite beautiful the next. Here are some of those times.
That traffic is bad in Metro Manila is not something new. This is probably the reason Malacañang has had no qualms about its decision to start the construction of new major roads all at the same time: The bedlam the projects are expected to cause is an ordinary and familiar day-to-day experience that people are long accustomed to.
We have read in newspapers and seen on TV a number of government officials who, when accused of a crime before the Office of the Ombudsman, or facing administrative cases, brush off the charges against them as “politically motivated,” “political harassment” or “political persecution.”
Price control does not apply to Meralco, which has a monopoly of power distribution service in its coverage area. But the law of supply and demand does apply.
The militant organization Anakbayan is trying to discredit the ROTC (Reserve Officers’ Training Corps) program, which is being proposed for revival. Anakbayan is made up of the youth sector of the Communist Party of the Philippines, and if they’d be in school, they would undergo the ROTC training themselves, and this will interfere with their work in Anakbayan.